NAILED Songs of the Week #44

Editor Staff, Music, April 28th, 2016

"...just like a wedding but without the groom..."

songs of the week
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Carrie Seitzinger, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of NAILED:

“Dark Water” – Claire Cronin

Much of Claire Cronin’s new release (due out next week) Came Down a Storm, a collaboration with John Dietrich (Deerhoof), features the gloomy edge of her definite and hearty voice. This track is my favorite. The instrumentation comes on like rain, develops to a steady storm, and becomes a turbulent river. Then dries up and showers lightly. I’m drawn to this weighty tempest. If you don’t let it drown you, you’ll find yourself surging with its force.

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Guest Editor: Brian S. Ellis, Poet and Author (most recently of Often Go Awry, 2015)

“Eliot St.” – Quilt

Such loose forms of sadness. Shane Butler’s golden neck. Anna Rochinski’s crystalline sighs. Trying to take walks in the neighborhood you used to live in, in your mind. Trying to remember each step of that short back street, just off the main drag. The gravel and litter. Shitty Puritan Graffiti. And being able to leave the memory, because it is just a memory, the strength and the safety of being able to leave. Waking up at night, drinking alone, drinking together. When people toast your glass, are you really thinking of another group of people, do you hold another toast within, the secret toast? Drinking alone even when you’re with others. How it’s possible to tell the truth about our past, our youths.

“If you call this second wind/If you call this flying love/I will catch you in the morning/In the valley of that word.”

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Matty Byloos, Publisher and Contributing Editor of NAILED:

“Kid on a Ladder” – Guided by Voices

I know I’m not alone when I say this, but Guided by Voices has long been the candle that refuses to get stamped out in the dark chambers of my musical taste. I don’t mean that with any melancholy, either. For as many albums as the band has released, as many iterations and lineups as they’ve had, as many sometime band members who their legions of underground fans may love and alternately hate (think: Tobin Sprout, whose presence I miss dearly on this album as Pollard’s songwriting partner), the band has always been able to maintain a kind of off the radar state. And it’s so easy to be continuously loyal to a band when you feel like they’re making exactly the kind of music you want, like they’re making it only for you, and they could give a fuck about anyone liking them en masse, or linking them at all, for that matter.

I’ve seen this band live many times, and loved them every time. No matter how many Rolling Rocks Pollard sucked down on stage, or who was accompanying him in the effort. Although the newest album has received a mixed bag of reviews (that seems typical as well), it strikes me as a return to a more lo-fi, undercooked sound that I truly love in this band. Think: Alien Lanes in tone and style, or Mag Earwhig! without quite as much production or punch on the distortion. If you’re that fan, then this is a Bible, and Pollard wrote and recorded every scratch and tick on the entire album, so there’s that.

And “Kid on a Ladder” is exactly what I want from GBV. Short, compact, burly in its fragile-ness, and packing more sentiment and weird assumed character history in 1:47 than most entire albums out there in the world.

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Shenyah Webb, Arts Editor of NAILED:

“Partyman” – Prince

July 1989, my Mexican step-sister turned fifteen. That meant a serious quinceañera, just like a wedding but without the groom. A party of people who walked down a church isle in matching purple silk, a fresh-to-fifteen year-old dressed in white poofy wedding garb, a sermon of some sort to initiate her to womanhood somehow, and then a smashing reception afterwards!

It was over 100 degrees that day, no AC, and I was one of those girls wearing the purple not-so-breathable ruffly bullshit. But, the boy walking the isle before me made up for it. He was about my age (a deep 12 – probably 13), and had the batman symbol shaved into the back of his head. Although I thought this was perfectly not okay, there was something really hot about it all. So hot, he had a heat stroke right in the middle of the quinceañera ceremony, actually.

After the ceremony and some time into the reception, the boy became a real spectacle. To me, he was famous. Not only had he already seen the newly released Batman with the Prince soundtrack, but he had also survived being so so hot and passing out from it! There was a lot of dancing that night and a whole lot of Prince. Although Prince had already made his mark on the era, I needed to know what was hidden in the buzz-cut batman symbol. I watched this boy for hours and I acted like he was watching me the whole night. I felt so connected to him. Connected because we both were wearing purple, because he loved Batman, and because I loved Prince.

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Check out Songs of the Week #43 for even more great music from the editors and contributors behind NAILED.

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Staff

More than one editor and/or contributor was responsible for the completion of this piece on NAILED.